In the 2004 horror-comedy Shaun of the Dead a group of Londoners led by Shaun (Simon Pegg) battled zombies and held out in a London pub. The film was a box office hit that, almost two decades on, still has an ever-expanding fan base. How did a low-budget British movie become a beloved global pop culture phenomenon? Entertainment Weekly’s senior writer Clark Collis’s authoritative new book You’ve Got Red on You: How Shaun of the Dead Was Brought to Life reveals the previously untold story behind the making of the film and its a book that I cant wait to read, having seen the Edgar Wright directed film dozens of times since its initial release.
Having interviewed a host of people across cast and crew involved in the making the film, Clark Collis details how a group of friends overcame seemingly insurmountable odds to make a movie that would take bites out of both the UK and the US box office before ascending to the status of bona fide comedy classic.
“Shaun of the Dead is one of my favourite films and I thought I knew everything there was to know about it,” says author Collis. “I couldn’t have been more wrong. You’ve Got Red on You is full of never-before-heard tales of behind-the-scenes struggles, battles, and near-disasters. But it’s also the story of how a bunch of mates made their dream movie about people fighting zombies in a London pub and discovered that dream was embraced by audiences all around the world. I hope people have as much of a blast reading it as I did writing it.”
The book features in-depth interviews with director Edgar Wright and producer Nira Park, who continue a productive and prolific partnership in 2021 with The Sparks Brothers documentary and the upcoming Last Night In Soho. There are also interviews with cast members Simon Pegg (soon to be seen reprising his role as Benji Dunn in Mission: Impossible 7), Nick Frost, Kate Ashfield, Bill Nighy, Lucy Davis, and Coldplay’s lead singer Chris Martin. Alongside a treasure trove of storyboards and rare behind-the-scenes photos, the book features commentary from famous fans, including filmmakers Quentin Tarantino and Eli Roth, Walking Dead executive producer Greg Nicotero, and World War Z author Max Brooks
“A really entertaining read and, if you’re a fan of the film, very illuminating on the struggles to not only get it made, but also to have the film be taken seriously. It doesn’t shy away from the hard times, but ultimately those are the challenges that made the film what it is. If you’ve ever wanted to make a movie, you’ll learn a lot in You’ve Got Red on You.” – Edgar Wright, director
YOU’VE GOT RED ON YOU: HOW SHAUN OF THE DEAD WAS BROUGHT TO LIFE is published in UK and US on 19th October.